Year of the Novel: Phase 1

Year of the Novel: Phase 1

This course is now SOLD OUT. Please email us your name and phone number and we will add you to the waiting list.

Who: Emily Maguire
8 x Tuesday evenings: 6, 13, 20, 27 February; 6, 13, 20, 27 March, 6:30-9:30pm
Cost: Full Price:
$880; Member: $615; Conc Member: $530

In this first phase, we’ll work on getting the bare bones of your novel down on paper (or screen). We’ll talk about generating ideas and planning, and look at the basic elements of fiction – point of view, voice, narration, character, plot, dialogue and setting.

Throughout, Emily Maguire will use examples from classic and contemporary fiction and from students’ work-in-progress to explore the topics covered, and guest speakers will share their insights to further expand your understanding of how published writers do what they do.

(Please note that this is one phase of a year-long course. Though the three phases are designed to build on each other, each may also be taken as a stand-alone unit. To enrol in all three phases, click here.)

1. Introduction & planning
Setting goals, creating structure, identifying obstacles & figuring out ways to get past them.

 2.  Inspiration 
Generating ideas, re-invigorating memories, stealing from life, stealing from history and making the old and tired, vigorous and new.

3. Story and plot
The difference between story and plot, and how you can make one into the other.

4. Character
In this session we’ll discuss what makes a character complex and compelling and what you can do to make you character as alive on the page as s/he is in your head.

5. Point of View & Voice
We’ll talk about the advantages and disadvantages of first, second and third POV, and which works best in what circumstances. We’ll also consider the relationship between POV and voice.

6. Showing and telling
Beginner writers are often told to ‘show, not tell’, but it’s not as simple as that. This week we’ll talk about the difference between showing and telling, and how to get the balance right.

7. Dialogue
Dialogue is an essential tool in both characterisation and plot development. We’ll discuss how brilliantly written dialogue can make your characters more believable, your plot more suspenseful and the world of your novel more vibrant.

8. Setting
Using the details of time and place to create atmosphere and solidify your invented world.

Participant Requirements
Pen and paper.

About the tutor
Emily Maguire
is the author of five novels and two non-fiction books, and an experienced teacher and mentor to young and emerging writers. Her novels have been translated into 12 languages and her articles, essays and reviews have been published widely. She was a 2010 and 2013 Sydney Morning Herald Young Novelist of the Year and the recipient of the 2011 NSW Writer’s Fellowship. Emily has served as Writer in Residence at the Djerassi Artists Program in Northern California (2009), as an Asialink Literature Resident in Vietnam (2008) and the Nancy Keesing Resident at the Cité Internationale des Arts, Paris (2014). Her latest novel An Isolated Incident, was shortlisted for the Miles Franklin Literary Award in 2017.


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